My daughter is a class of 2018, DS/L. She's 5'5" with very a respectable vertical......I could list her numbers here but she's still growing in this arena (she can do 40" box jump easily). Since she's a backcourt player we haven't been tracking her vertical stats too heavily....we list those on her U athlete page and Be recruited pages.
She has solid grades 3.9 GPA and 26 ACT score.....hasn't taken the SAT yet.
She wants to play collegiate level v ball, has 4 years club competition with this season being her first year at the Open level. While she's not a top 1% player her coaches confirm that her abilities will proceed to next level opportunity as she continues to grow and practice.
What advice can you offer to her and us (parents) for her next steps in her recruiting and last two years of HS volleyball?
You are in the most competitive position for collegiate opportunities just because of the sheer volume of players who call themselves Liberos/DS. The LB/DS position seems to be the 'catch all' position for shorter players, OH's that can't jump well or have a not powerful attack, setters who have slow hands or can't block, etc.
I have often written and said in my NCSA Athletic Recruiting Talks that LB/DS families must be patient aggressive in the recruiting process, because they will usually be the last one's on their club team to secure their collegiate opportunity.
There should be two prime area to focus upon; 1) Your LB/DS needs to be constantly improving her skill sets. Because the position is so competitive for collegiate opportunities, the better that she is the more opportunities she will have. 2) Be consistently reaching out to college programs with video and update (both current programs and new programs). Families must be patient, aggressive and consistent in their outreach and communication.
What kind of stats (passing and digs) do you look for when recruiting this position?
College coaches do not tend to 'trust' stats from club volleyball because we are not the ones taking the stats or establishing the rating criteria. This opinion is applicable to all the positions, not just LB/DS. Instead of taking stats, take video because I want to see that video and the players needs to self evaluate because stats can lie but video does not.
My contention is that if the athlete has the work ethic, grades and talent. A college level opportunity can be earned/found.
Agreed, but that 'found' opportunity must be the correct ability fit. For instance, an average LB/DS can have a great work ethic, fantastic grades and solid talent, but she will not be playing at Nebraska because those LB/DS's have a GREAT work ethic, GREAT grades and GREAT talent. For families to find that opportunity, they must be realistic about the abilities of their daughter (son) and for some reason, parents have a realistic evaluation of their children seems to be a big hurdle these days.
We are creating a video for her web pages. What are your thoughts on that? Highlight cuts vs. full match vids....what's most desirable?
Video is the key outreach tool for any volleyball recruiting situation. College coaches use video as the 1st evaluation, and this video will determine if a coach moves forward to see the player in person.
I have always suggested 2 types of video for a player's recruiting effort - 1) Highlight/skills video - Show me in 3-5 minutes as many repetitions as possible of the player's skill sets specific to her position. 2) Game video - Show me 2 to 3 sets (not full matches) of her most recent play, which is unedited except for cutting out the dead time or when she is not on the court.
Lastly, video must always be updated. Older video (older than 3 months) hurts a player because college coaches are constantly recruiting in real time.
We have an open mind in this process and no expected target for play/school level (NCAA/NAIA) for her path of opportunity.
Having an open mind is a critical component for finding the best fit for any player, and especially within the hyper competitive position of Libero/DS!
Thanks so very much for what you do here. E.W.
As one of my favorite recruits said, "It is all good".